With Halloween just weeks away, it’s time to roll up your sleeves, dig out your carving tools and turn a bright pumpkin into a festive decoration. A jack-o’-lantern is always a good standby, but we’ve been truly blown away by some of the creative pumpkins we’ve seen on the Web lately.
Get inspired to think outside the jack-o’-lantern this year and take your pumpkin in a completely new direction. Here are some of our favorite finds, created by bloggers with simple tools and plenty of imagination.
This cannibalistic pumpkin is sure to get a laugh out of trick-or-treaters. Check out the full tutorial at ChopCow.com to learn how to pull it off — patience is required, but anyone can do it with household tools. We love how a simple steak knife is used to “skin” the teeth and eyes, creating a great color contrast.
Mysterious owls capture the spirit of Halloween perfectly, and this carving from Wood Anemone is as simple to execute as a regular jack-o’-lantern face. Just draw the pattern on the pumpkin before you start carving to stay on track. We love the curl at the edges of the eyes!
Here’s another owl pumpkin from Katie at TinyPrints.com, who demonstrates how you can make creative designs without actually doing much carving at all. Tiny pumpkins stand in as the eyes, and V-shaped feathers under the nose can be repurposed as ears.
Katie and her pals held a pumpkin carving contest, where this black cat was also presented — along with the winner, a pumpkin diorama with a full underwater scene. Click here to see them all.
And who says you have to carve at all to make a fabulous Halloween pumpkin? These patterned pumpkins from LollyJane.com make great decorations throughout autumn, thanks to their seasonal color palette of green, brown and orange. The grown-up designs are perfect for a sophisticated Halloween party.
Truly artsy folks can take the painting even further. These painted pumpkins from Alisa Burke are anything but scary, showing how you can create pretty pumpkins to complement your home decor.
Alisa’s tutorial demonstrates how she first covered the pumpkins entirely in pastel colors, then used dimensional paint — and a toothpick! — to add details.
Speaking of decor, try using carved pumpkins as your centerpiece! That’s what Annie Campbell of Après Fête did when she threw a pumpkin carving party for her friends. Using a drill, you can make uniform holes in small pumpkins (white ones are especially elegant) and place lit candles inside to create a gorgeous — and slightly spooky — mood.
Check out the video below for more pumpkin carving tips:
What creative pumpkin carving projects have you done this year? Send pictures to firstname.lastname@example.org!